- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 19, 2004

Philip R. Hochberg, representing some of the largest sports groups in the nation, has signed on with Rockville law firm Shulman, Rogers, Gandal, Pordy & Ecker PA for his own practice.

Mr. Hochberg, 63, serves as special counsel to the firm, focusing on his sports-entity clients such as the National Football League, National Basketball Association, National Hockey League, National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing and the Professional Golfers’ Association of America.

He has been representing most of these clients for 35 years, handling issues such as copyright, communications, and legislative and regulatory compliance.

Mr. Hochberg, who was a football announcer for the Washington Redskins for 38 years, also handles some cases for the cable and satellite industry.

Mr. Hochberg joined Shulman about two months ago after serving as counsel at national law firm Verner Liipfert, which merged with national law firm Piper Rudnick LLP in October 2002.

He works under the Shulman name but independently from the firm. “We’re working on the exact relationship, but it’s my practice,” he said.

After making a seamless transition to the firm, Mr. Hochberg said his biggest challenge is keeping up with the regulatory and legislative decrees that affect his clients.

“The sports interests are businesses and are affected as businesses by Congress and government agencies,” Mr. Hochberg said. “They have to have counsel, too.”

For example, Mr. Hochberg is filing comments on behalf of the NHL for a Federal Communications Commission hearing next month that will look into violence on television. Mr. Hochberg argued that classifications of violent television programming should not include sports television.

David Pordy, managing partner at the firm, said Mr. Hochberg’s experience and clientele will compliment the firm’s corporate and intellectual-property practices. Mr. Hochberg’s clients also give the firm exposure to sports players seeking entertainment or sports lawyers, Mr. Pordy said.

“Phil will introduce his clients to our other attorneys and help some of our younger attorneys with areas he does practice. It’s hard to put a value on that,” he said.

Although he is closing in on retirement age, Mr. Hochberg said he has no plans to give up working anytime soon. “I’m still having too much fun to retire. But I am trying to involve more of the bright, young fellows we have here who are interested in the sports practice,” he said.

Mr. Hochberg lives in Rockville with his wife, Jane.

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